10 Step Guide to Car Cleaning And Detailing

Posted on: 29th April 2022

Cleaning a car like a pro is easy with the correct products. Detailing is more than just washing away debris, bring an exterior back to a showroom quality shine. This not only looks great but also protects paintwork from UV and road contaminants.

Step 1 - Wheel Wash

Equipment Required

Simply Auto Wheel Brush

Stoner Wheel Cleaner

To kick off the process we will start with the dirtiest parts of the vehicle. Wheels pick up the majority of road dirt and brake dust which often makes for difficult cleaning without the correct products. First rinse the wheels and then spray on the wheel cleaner and leave for it to work its magic for a couple of minutes before using a stiff wheel brush to get into every side of each section of the alloy whee Repeat the process on particularly stubborn areas. 

PRO TIP – Always wash alloy wheels when they are cool to the touch. Warm alloys will dry the detergent and prevent it working. 

Step 2 - Whole Body Wash

Equipment Required

Stoner Coating Wash

Simply Auto Microfiber Noodle Wash Mitt

Simply Auto Microfiber Cloths

Start with a rinse to remove any loose grit before washing the vehicle with the wash solution. The key with the initial rinse is to remove grit and debris without rubbing it into the paintwork and creating swirl marks or marring. 

PRO TIP - Always use the double bucket technique. Bucket 1 is used with fresh water to rinse the wash mitt and remove debris that could scratch the paintwork. Bucket 2 is filled with wash solution.

Dedicated microfiber wash mitts provide an ideal solution for cleaning paintwork. The soft noodle does not scratch paintwork and absorbs debris before rinsing to further reduce marring. 

Work from the top down in small sections making sure to rinse each area quickly after cleaning to stop soap drying to paintwork.

Step 3 - Stubborn Stain Remover

Equipment Required

Stoner Tarminator

Bug Eraser Wipes

Simply Auto Fine Microfiber Cleaning Sponge


Often stubborn stains remain on paintwork after washing, these are caused by road tar, tree sap, bugs and bird droppings. We recommend using Stoner Tarminator or Bug Eraser on the affected areas. This tough solution makes light work of stains to leave the surface clean. Combine this with a fine microfiber sponge for added cleaning power. 

PRO TIP – Let the Tarminator do the hard work. Don’t scrub as this could damage the paintwork. 

Rinse the entire vehicle using plenty of clean water. 

Step 4 - Drying

Equipment Required

Simply Auto Chamois Leather

Simply Auto Plush Drying Towel

It’s important to dry the vehicle completely before moving on to the next steps. There are two options. Use a Plush drying towel that’s super absorbent with 1 towel being used for an entire vehicle. The alternative option is using a chamois leather, designed to be used damp these natural clothes absorb water and leave a streak-free finish. 

Step 5 - Sealing and Shining

Equipment Required

Stoner Synthetic Sealant

Stoner Honey Wax 900

Simply Auto Waxing Towel Kit

We’ve finished removing dirt and debris which makes the vehicle paintwork dull. Now is the time to shine and this is where we bring the bodywork back to a showroom finish. 

Stoner Sealant is used to bring out a depth of colour to the paintwork, shine and seal the paintwork to protect it from UV and road contaminants. Apply sealant liberally to the entire vehicle using a dry detailing towel and leave it to dry. Finish with a soft waxing towel to remove the excess sealant and buff the paintwork to a shine. 

If you want the ultimate shine it's time to use Stoner Honey Wax – The carnauba wax creates the ultimate shine and protection for the paintwork. It can be layered to improve durability and leaves a slick like-new finish. Easy to apply with a soft waxing towel but it does take some elbow grease to achieve a great shine. 

PRO TIP - Avoid unpainted plastic trims with both sealant and wax. Although not irreversible it can leave ugly white marks on unpainted dark plastic parts. 

Step 6 - Tire Finish

Equipment Required

Simply Auto Microfiber Cloth

Stoner Tyre Finish

Giving the tyres a showroom shine is an easy way to lift vehicle detailing to a higher level. Using Stoner Tyre Finish with a microfiber cloth deepens the black and gives a great shine. Use multiple times on tired-looking tyres to achieve the desired finish. Tyre finish has the added benefit of protecting the tyres from UV degradation. 

Step 7 - Trim Shine

Equipment Required

Simply Auto Microfiber Cloth

Stoner Trim Shine


Giving tired plastics an uplift. Over time unpainted plastics fade due to UV degradation. Again easy to apply using a microfiber cloth – Stoner Trim Shine quickly uplifts tired-looking plastics to give a depth of colour and showroom finish. 

Step 8 - Window Treatment

Equipment Required

Invisible Glass Cleaner

Invisible Glass Anti Fog

Invisible Glass Rain Repel

Invisible Glass Ceramic Glass Coating - Coming Soon...


We are nearly at the end of the process but equally important is the glasswork. Invisible glass offers a range of products specifically designed to clean and protect automotive glass. Start by cleaning both internal and external surfaces with Invisible Glass cleaner. Invisible Glass is designed without soaps, dyes or fragrance to leave a professional streak-free finish. 

Next, treat the internal surface with Invisible Glass Antifog spray to reduce condensation build-up and use Rain Repellent on the outside to make rain and road spray bead from the glass surface offering a safe drive in adverse weather. 

PRO TIP – Always use a dry lint-free cloth to work on the glass – this won’t leave any dust or fibres which leave smears on the screen. 

For longer-lasting glass protection you could apply Invisible Glass’ Ceramic Glass Coating which adds a double hardness hydrophobic coating to the glass making tree sap, bird droppings and other dirt easy to clean for up to 2 years. 

Step 9 - Maintain

Equipment Required

Simply Auto Microfiber Detailing Towel

Stoner Quick Detailer

Staying on top of vehicle detailing is far easier than doing a full clean and detail every couple of months. With Stoner Quick Detailer simply spray onto any dirty spots and wipe off any debris with a cloth. The quick detailer also leaves a protective shiny coating to maintain the showroom finish. 

PRO TIP - Keep the bottle and cloth in the car for quick and easy detailing on the go. 

Step 10 - Stand Back, Admire and Capture

Step 10 is easy, tidy up all your detailing products into your bucket, then stand back and admire your work. Finally, grab some snaps of your fully detailed vehicle looking as good as new and post them on Instagram tagging @jrp_distribution @stoner_car_care @invisibleglass @simplybrandsasialtd so we can see how your hard work paid off! 

PRO TIP – Get low when taking the picture for a more dramatic scene. 

Back to previous page